Social Presence for Businesses and Brands
Many businesses, both B2C and B2B, are already reaching out beyond their own corporate websites to develop a social presence. Two popular choices are Facebook Pages and Twitter Business Accounts. Some businesses are experimenting with LinkedIn Company Pages.
Facebook Pages, with their flexible brand controls, tab structure, and large ecosystem of third party tools and agencies are enabling businesses to create highly customized, branded experiences for their customers and prospects. It’s quite easy to add different engagement applications (polls, surveys, sign-ups, deals and promotions, presentations, videos, twitter streams, news and event announcements and more). And it’s not just B2C companies anymore. Many B2B companies such as SAP are connecting with their customers and prospects on Facebook today.
Twitter Business Accounts
Twitter is able to serve a useful role as a conduit between a Business or Brand and its customers and prospects for customer service, promotions, deals, and general company information. However, given it’s inherent 140-character limit, the quality of the content consumption that’s possible on a Twitter stream remains limited. The native twitter web interface provides a limited experience for viewing photos and videos, and can only link out to long form content.
LinkedIn Company Pages and Groups
Google+ Business Profiles: A Wishlist
Platform and Device Access: Open to all businesses, from the local corner store to a Fortune 10 company. Work well across all desktops, tablets and mobile devices.
Interfaces and APIs: Open interfaces with some structure. Quick and easy addition of a range of custom and third party applications into Business Profile pages. This will enable a business to offer their customers 100% of the same capabilities to interact and conduct transactions with the business as they do via their own website.
Circles for Business Profiles: Much has been written about Google+ circles, and whether individual users will use that capability effectively. Where circles will make even more sense is for businesses! Imagine being able to deliver targeted promotions, deals, content, information to prospects at different stages in their relationship with the business. Properly defined and managed Google+ business circles with deep analytics could provide the level of engagement with prospects inside a social platform that is hard to do today. Imagine lead nurturing inside Google+ (similar to what you would have to do today with a marketing automation platform such as Eloqua or Marketo).
Easy Prospect Discovery: Google+ is powered by the world’s best search engine. They already rank and surface the most relevant content to a prospect who is expressing purchase intent via Google keyword searches. Google+ could become a top choice for businesses to create, post and share great content that is served out via Google+ streams. Google+ posts are linked to long form content on their own corporate blogs, and third party media sites. A great piece of content will get read, commented on, and voted up (+1s) by the network of customers and prospects. This in turn can be served up as a highly relevant piece of content to new prospects as they search inside Google+ and on the web. This would increase the pace at which businesses and prospects find each other, and confirm the fit and match between them. Google+ could take a very different approach from LinkedIn, with their (cold outreach) inMails and Group Member messages. A well-designed recommendation engine that shows related content to a post or content being consumed by a user would create a superior user experience.
Content Marketing Done Right
The Content Marketing Process
Sharing on Facebook – All Or Nothing?
With every user’s time at a premium, a key issue with Facebook is the lack of relevance of many posts to a recipient who is shown the post via his or her feed. The Facebook sharing model does not require a user to better match the post with relevant receivers in his or her social graph. That is so unlike an email based sharing interaction where, especially in a business context, most of us try to be sensitive to the fact that we should only send someone an email if we have something that would be of interest to them.
Sharing on Twitter – Save That Extra Click
Sharing on LinkedIn – Share What? With Who?
LinkedIn status updates have been a little late to the social sharing party! As a result, many users are simply linking their Twitter accounts to LinkedIn. Tweets flow to LinkedIn users as well, via a marketer’s LinkedIn profile, and the associated status. Again, given the limited features around adding rich media components and interactivity to a LinkedIn status update, and given the updates disappear quickly, they are not a very effective means to share content in terms of both the user experience and the ROI to the marketer.
Sharing on Google+ – More Targeted, More Relevant?
Other Related Topics That Will Interest Enterprise Marketers:
Q. What new forms of advertising might be part of the Google+ experience?
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